We heard from Pete Fox last week, a step father of one of our IDVA clients.
He wanted to raise funds for our IDVA team and the Salvation Army. Both organisations, he says, really transformed his step daughter's life and her journey out of domestic abuse. He is looking for sponsors for an incredible journey of his own!
Pete is planning to cycle an extraordinary route, here is what he says:
The Reducing the Risk Champions' Network has been shortlisted as a finalist in the Partnership Working Award in The Children & Young People Now Awards 2018.
The Children & Young People Now Awards recognise projects and initiatives that improve the lives of children, young people and families. The awards are now in their thirteenth year and help raise the profile for projects such as ours.
The Reducing the Risk Champions Network strives to bridge the gap between agencies and to strengthen information sharing and networking between professionals who are all supporting victims of domestic abuse and their families. Therefore to have our hard work recognised by these awards is a real indication of what we have achieved thus far and we thank all our Champions for being part of our networks. Your support and dedication to Reducing the Risk of Domestic Abuse are what keep our networks thriving.
We just wanted to let all our DA Champions know that we very recently trained a fantastic new batch of Champion Trainers in Torbay in Devon.
This great group of trainers will soon be swelling the numbers of the new network across their area.
This is a very new approach for Devon but the training and concept were extremely well received by everyone there. Those of us who have enjoyed a network for some time already appreciate the benefits of belonging to DA Champions and it was brilliant to see it received so enthusiastically again.
Many thanks to Jason (Chief Champ in Torbay) and all his new trainers for their warm welcome. We feel that this group is destined for great success in spreading both awareness of DA and the benefits of a network for Champions and their agencies, as well as, above all, initiating a positive response for victims.
We have already started to receive applications for joining the Torbay network- if you have signed up, then we will be in touch very soon- once the training dates and venues are confirmed- watch this space.
One of our champions contacted us regarding an interesting date she'd been on. We asked her to summarise her experience to share some of early signs of a possible abusive relationship. Please read below:
So, I went on a date the other night. This guy wasn’t my type, his online profile showed posed pictures of perfect pecs and usually I would filter this type of profile out. But he was local and straight forward and didn’t play games. He was happy to meet me in a local pub and I felt I had nothing to lose, a drink and a laugh, why not?
When we met in real life, he was exactly as the photos suggested, muscly and attractive, great dress sense and expensive car. When we sat down in the pub the first thing he did was ask whether I’d seen his Instagram account, I told him no. So quick as a flash he whipped his phone out and began scrolling through and showing me endless pictures of him shirtless in front of a mirror, at the gym in front of a mirror, dressed and dapper… in front of a mirror. I rolled my eyes, I think I was meant to be impressed. He told me how there was so much I would find out about him as time would go on and he kept commenting on the connection between us. He kept talking about places he would take me and everything that was in store.
It was all very presumptuous for a first date, a tiny fraction of me felt flattered and maybe this is what its like when you meet someone who you instantly connect to? Maybe it is this instantaneous? Maybe you start talking about a life together and this intensity is what is to be expected when you meet your soulmate? These thoughts were fleeting and not based in reality. The reality was as soon as I thought the word ‘intense’ I remembered every article I’d ever read from survivors of abuse, about how it was intense and exciting when they first met their abusers, how they were so charming and seemed to have it all.
We are just in the process of setting up a brand new network of DA Champions in Torbay, Devon. Our new Chief Champion in the area, Jason Preece, has been diligently helping us do our homework on their processes and sent me a very useful link. Jason said it has been a very handy website for him and so we checked it out and we agree.
So thank you Jason for making us aware of the Social Worker's Toolbox website. Whenever Champions collaborate, there is always some benefit or learning so thanks for sharing this with us.
You do not have to be a social worker to find so many useful resources on this site; the link above takes you to the Domestic Abuse page but it offers so much more.
Oxfordshire Safeguarding Children's Board have announced training workshops on the Domestic Abuse Pathway for Young People.
Data show that young people, including those below 16, can experience all forms of domestic abuse and the likelihood of experiencing high severity abuse is no different to adults. Indeed, the data suggest the levels of high severity abuse may be highest for the youngest age group. The Domestic Abuse Pathway for Young People was an outcome of the Child J combined DHR/SCR and a renewed version of the Pathway which takes account of changes in local policy and practice and new legislation has been relaunched in August 2018.
This half-day course has been specifically designed to increase professionals’ knowledge, skills, and confidence in supporting young people experiencing and/or using abusive behaviours in their intimate relationships.
Milton Keynes council are currently conducting a domestic abuse needs assessment, asking stakeholders for their views about domestic abuse in Milton Keynes and the local services provided by MKACT. The responses to this survey will be used to update the domestic abuse strategy and to inform future commissioning decisions for domestic abuse services in Milton Keynes. Here is a link to the Stakeholders' survey which should only take around 10 minutes of your time to complete. The questionnaire will be closed on Friday, August 10.
We have recently had issues with the need for a landline number where people can leave messages. We do not have the resources to permanently staff a telephone line, particularly if we are in another area delivering training or in development meetings, but we will respond to messages as soon as we are able (normally within one working day).
So, if you do need to contact Reducing the Risk, you can now either:
call us on 01865 965055 and leave a voice message, or
Please do not use these contact details in an emergency (call 999 in an emergency, and local helplines are listed on our site), or include personal sensitive data (names, places etc.) of any cases of concern, as this is not an encrypted email service.